New York enacts law to teach police officers how to recognize hate crimes amid rise in anti-Semitism

NEW YORK (JTA) — New York state police officers must be trained in how to recognize and respond to hate crimes under a new law.

The bill comes as hate crimes in general — and anti-Semitic incidents in particular — are on the rise in New York City. Orthodox Jewish neighborhoods in Brooklyn have seen a string of assaults and vandalism directed at Jews and Jewish institutions.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed the measure on Monday. Its chief sponsors are State Assemblywoman Nily Rozic of the New York City borough of Queens and State Sen. Todd Kaminsky of Long Island, both Jewish lawmakers.

“Hatred has no place in New York State and we will continue taking aggressive measures to stamp out hate whenever and wherever it rears its ugly head,” Cuomo said in a statement.

The bill instructs the state Division of Human Rights and Hate Crimes Task Force to develop procedures for training law enforcement to handle hate crimes. It does not detail exactly what the training will entail.

“With the steady surge of hate crimes across New York, there is little room for complacency,” Rozic said in a statement. “This new law will equip local law enforcement with the proper tools to identify, report, and respond to these crimes that continue to divide and instill widespread fear.”